Here’s the latest on the AstraZeneca/Seroquel drama:
In the court of public opinion, AstraZeneca is taking a beating over its handling of Seroquel, the blockbuster antipsychotic pill that’s the subject of thousands of consumer lawsuits claiming it caused their diabetes. In the court of law, though, the drug maker is fighting back.
A three-day hearing in Delaware Superior Court last week offered a preview of how AstraZeneca lawyers intend to thwart plaintiffs who blame Seroquel for their diabetes. The company faces lawsuits from more than 15,000 plaintiffs, including hundreds of cases in Delaware, where Seroquel was developed and where AstraZeneca has its U.S. headquarters.
During last week’s hearing — a pretrial proceeding in what could be the first Seroquel case in the country to go to trial — AstraZeneca’s attorneys tried to convince Judge Joseph Slights III to throw out testimony from three expert witnesses who connected Seroquel use to diabetes.
Attorneys and plaintiffs are now watching to see how Slights will rule. A win for AstraZeneca could avert a trial scheduled to start June 29.
now, here is the very interesting part:
The case was brought by Kansas resident Nina Scaife, 46, who started taking Seroquel in May 2003 and was diagnosed with diabetes a year later, according to testimony.
AstraZeneca, which has said that it will litigate each Seroquel case on its individual merits, argued that Scaife’s expert witnesses failed to examine the scientific issues rigorously enough to satisfy legal requirements.
Moreover, the drug maker’s attorneys said, Scaife — and all the other plaintiffs to date — have additional risk factors for diabetes that make it impossible to single out Seroquel as the cause of the disease. In the case of Scaife, for instance, lawyers argued that factors including her obesity and African-American ethnicity had already elevated her risk of diabetes before she took Seroquel.
“I can’t see how the plaintiffs can win,” said Michael Kelly, a Wilmington-based partner in the law firm McCarter & English, who’s slated to try the Scaife case for AstraZeneca.
AstraZeneca is arguing the factors including this woman’s obesity and African-American ethnicity had already elevated her risk of diabetes before she took Seroquel. Really? Disgusting. Well, AstraZeneca, I gained 40 pounds in two months on your lovely drug, Seroquel. I am Caucasian. I was never overweight until I began my journey with psychiatric meds. My grandmother died entirely too young due to complications from diabetes and guess what- she was on psychiatric medications for many, many years.
A question for you, AstraZeneca: Tell me, how many years have you known (and hid the data) that your drug was linked to weight gain and diabetes???? Would you say, for nearly ten years??? And lastly, a note to you, AstraZeneca: excuse my language but, f**k off. you make me sick.